Art Forms & Theatre Concepts will present “Crowns” for Piccolo Spoleto on May 31

Art Forms & Theatre Concepts (AFTC) is the premier African-American theatre company in South Carolina.
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Read the “Crowns” press release.

photos by John Williams

Current production: CROWNS

Art Forms & Theatre Concepts, Inc., the premiere African American theatre company in the Lowcountry presents “CROWNS” by Regina Taylor and directed by Art Gilliard. This gospel musical is set to lift your spirits as it tells a moving story in which hats become a springboard for an exploration of Black history and identity as seen through the eyes of a young black woman who has come down South to stay with her aunt after her brother is killed in Brooklyn.

The production shows that hats tell tales concerning everything from the etiquette of hats to their historical and contemporary social functioning. There is a hat for every occasion, from flirting to churchgoing to funerals to baptisms, and the tradition of hats is traced back to African rituals and slavery to the New Testament and current fashion. First Ladies are known for their crowns “hats,” please show your support and wear your finest hat.

This Gospel inspired production will have you tapping and clapping as it offers a look into the story of the dramatic role hats play in people’s lives. In the production the characters are also introducing Yolanda to a new way of life.

The production features some of the finest talents in the low country. with Howard N. Brown serving as Music Director. The cast includes Rosa L. Bryan as Mother Shaw, Jaelin Rivers as Mabel, Ashley Hale as Velma, Trimeia Frazier as Wanda, Stephanie Hale as Jeanette, Olivia Desaussure as Yolanda, Enoch Hale as the preacher and Dontae Hale as the dancer.

The production takes place Friday, May 31st at 8:00P.M. Saturday June 1st at 2:00 and 8:00 P.M. and Sunday June 2nd at 4:00 P.M. at Burke High Auditorium 244 President Street in downtown Charleston, SC.

Tickets for the production are $30.00 and will be on sale at the main Piccolo Spoleto box office. Or online at , phone 1 (843) 724-7295 or by Fax 1(843) 724-7173.


Stephanie Hale
Olivia Desaussure
Trimeia Frazier
Dontae Hale
Jaelin Rivers
Ashley Hale
Lisa Bryant
Howard Brown Music Director